Indiana Pacers dominate Detroit Pistons in 125-88 win

DETROIT, MI - DECEMBER 26: Langston Galloway
DETROIT, MI - DECEMBER 26: Langston Galloway /

The Detroit Pistons didn’t seem to learn much from their win against the Wizards and continues to struggle taking care of the ball.

The Detroit Pistons looked to start a winning streak against Indiana, but the Pacers had a different outcome in mind. The Pistons were held under 90 points for the fourth time this season.

Indiana has not only been one of the hottest teams in the East, but in the NBA.  Since early December, the Pacers have had a 10-2 record, which is the best in the league.

Tonight, Indiana proved why they are a team to be reckoned with in the East, beating the Pistons by 38 points.  The Pacers received help from their starting five as well as the bench.

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Victor Oladipo who leads the Pacers in scoring at 20 per game, had a quiet offensive performance, but still made an impact.  He finished the game with seven points and seven assists.  But it was the play off his teammates, that helped secure the win for the Pacers.

Indiana took control of this game at the tip off, wasting no time against the Pistons.  Detroit could not find a groove at any point during the game and when it seemed as if the Pistons would cut into the deficit, the Pacers answered right back on the offensive end.

Dwane Casey wanted his team to take better care of the basketball, but I’m not sure that the Pistons got the memo tonight.  The Pistons committed 22 turnovers as a team and the Pacers scored 30 points off of those turnovers.  Indiana also had seven players in double figures.

Darren Collison and Domantas Sabonis led the scoring for Indiana as both scored 19 points.  Collison was perfect from the field, finishing 7-7 from the field, 2-2 from the three and 3-3 from the free throw line.

Thaddeus Young and Myles Turner both had 17 points as they dominated inside the paint and Bojan Bogdanovic and Doug McDermott both had 12 points.

Indiana finished with 68 points in the paint as they had one of their best offensive performances this season.

Detroit, who started off really slow, had no chance after the first quarter.

This is the first time Detroit has had 20 plus turnovers in consecutive games since December 1-3 of 2013.

This was an embarrassing loss for the Detroit and everyone was to blame, from the players to the coaches.  Blake Griffin finished with 18 points to lead the team and Luke Kennard had a solid performance off the bench with 14 points.

Andre Drummond, who was in foul trouble early in the game, was definitely missed out on the floor. He was able to finish with 12 points and 12 rebounds.

This was a really good win for Indiana because Oladipo, the team’s go to man, did not have to contribute that much in the victory.  He relied on his team and they stepped up big time.

Let’s look at how both halves went for both team’s.

Game Breakdown

Second Half

This game was over before the fourth quarter ended.

The Pistons showed a lot of frustration from the players to the coaches as Indiana was running away with the game.  Zaza Pachulia received a technical late in the fourth and things weren’t going well for the Pistons at the start of the fourth.

Detroit looked out of sync on offense committing turnovers and showing no fight on the defensive end.  The Pacers had a 110-79 lead over the Pistons with four and a half to play and let’s be real, if you’re Detroit, you want the game to be over with already.

Detroit would need to pick up the defensive effort against Indiana in the second half if they had wanted to have a chance in making this a ball game.

With a big third quarter against Washington, Detroit looked to do the same tonight.

Drummond, whose playing time was somewhat limited due to foul trouble got the Pistons going early with four quick buckets to trim the Pistons deficit to at 60-49.

Indiana quickly responded with a 7-0 run in the third led by Collison who had a nice transition dunk and a step back three and Turner who had a nice mid range jump shot.  Indiana extended the lead quickly to 67-49.

Collison going perfect from the field shooting 4-4 was starting to heat up.  Detroit has been know to make second half pushes this season and one was definitely needed in tonight’s game.  But the Pacers proved to be too much for the Pistons to handle.

The Pacers had a 75-55 lead with 5:34 left to play in the third.  Collison continued his hot shooting in the third going perfect from the field.  He had 13 points in the third with 2:00 left to play in the third as his total was at 19 points.

Detroit was completely outplayed in the third.

The only bright spot for Detroit was Reggie Bullock, who had eight points in the third connecting on two three’s.  Even the hot shooting from Bullock was not enough for Detroit. The Pacers controlled the game as they led the Pistons 91-69 after three.

First Half

The second quarter was not too friendly for the Detroit Pistons.

The Pistons had to play much of the second without Drummond, who was in foul trouble with three.

Kennard tried to give Detroit some life off the bench as he had a quick five points in the second, but Detroit needed more help from the bench.

Detroit already had 11 turnovers in the game as the careless basketball continued and Indiana made sure they would capitalize on Detroit’s mistake. Pachulia stepped it up for the Pistons with six points and six boards off the bench.

Pachulia was a force on the glass and was able to score in the paint for the Pistons.  Kennard, who was off to a hot start to start the second, finished with the second with 11 points.

Indiana would continue its positive shooting from the field as they finished the first half shooting 63%, taking a 58-45 lead over Detroit.  The Pacers had three scorers in double digits (Bogdanovic-10 points, Sabonis and Turner-11 points) and the Pistons had two in double figures (Griffin 10-points and Kennard-11 points).

Detroit had a slow start to the game.  The Detroit Pistons went without a field goal through four and a half minutes in the first quarter.  The Pistons were careless with the basketball, committing three early turnovers within the first three minutes.

Indiana would take advantage of Detroit’s sloppy play jumping out to an 8-0 lead with 9:51 in the first.  Casey would call a time out to calm the Pistons down.

Indiana could not miss a shot going 6-7 from the field to start the game off, getting to the rim without any problem.  In the middle of the first, despite Detroit’s sloppy play, the Pistons were able to cut into the deficit trailing 18-15 after a made jump shot by Bullock.

But, the Pacers turned the intensity up shooting 71.4% from the field to take a 32-21 lead after one, with 22 of the points coming inside the paint.


Turnovers were the main concern for the Detroit Pistons tonight as the careless play did not help the Pistons one bit.  When your opponent has success off the turnovers, you will find yourself playing catch up and that is what Detroit was doing the entire game, from the first to the fourth quarter.

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With this road trip, Detroit will need to improve on the defensive end and on taking care of the basketball.

Hopefully, Casey will emphasize on those two areas and if the Detroit Pistons wants to start winning games, they need to make improvements in these areas.